THE founder of a sports campaign group has been rewarded with a statuette to celebrate her success.

Emma Back, who created the Winchester Sport, Art and Leisure Trust (SALT), was one of 25 women in the country to receive the award recognising the achievements of women.

The statuette was unveiled at the Winchester Lido last weekend as part of the Heritage Open Days ‘Put Her Forward’ ceremony.

Emma has devoted long hours to the trust and has campaigned for a new sport and leisure facility in the city.

She is also a chief supporter at the Lido and has set up various events over the past few years, including the Children of Winchester Festival and the Winchester ClubHub.

‘Put Her Forward’ aims to recognise the women who play significant roles in society.

Cat, one of two hosts from the ceremony, said: “Today is the first time I’ve actually met Emma, though we’ve spoken a lot on email.

“The thing that strikes me about Emma, and which is probably the most obvious thing to say, is that she is active.

“Even now Emma is taking time out of being involved in Winchester Heritage Open Day activities.”

Emma’s statuette was the 12th of its kind to be unveiled.

Emma said: “I was very shocked to find out about the statue, but also very honoured. I hope any resulting publicity brings greater recognition for all community volunteers in Winchester, but particularly those in our sports sector, which is really unappreciated.

“Sport only happens in our city because hundreds of local people give their time and energy for free to make it happen.

“Indeed, the Lido building was saved from demolition in the 1980s only through the efforts of community champions.”